Stories of Hope

See how organ, eye and tissue donation has healed lives.

Lynn & Ted, living donor & recipient

Cousins joined near the hip
Living kidney donor Lynn, and her cousin, Ted, have always been close. They are first cousins and live on the same street. When Ted needed a kidney transplant, they would come to share far more than relatives and a neighborhood.

In his thirties, Ted received his first kidney transplant from his father and was enjoying life as a married father of two with an active career as a Detective with the Montgomery County Police Department in Maryland.

As complications over the years caused Ted’s kidney to begin failing, he found he wasn’t able to do many of the things he used to. With a son about to graduate and an active daughter in high school, Ted’s health often kept him on the sidelines. While still able to maintain his role at work during the day, his evenings were consumed with dialysis treatments.

In 2015, Ted’s situation worsened. A second kidney transplant was needed to save his life. The search for a living donor began among his family, including his 44-year old cousin, Lynn.

“My husband of 31 years has kidney disease, so this decision was something I needed to pray about because I wasn’t sure if I should get tested for my cousin or wait in case my husband needed a kidney,” says Lynn. “My husband is doing much better, never had to go on dialysis and never needed a kidney. God provided the right answer to my prayer.”

As the date of the transplant approached, Lynn cleverly nicknamed her kidney “Maxwell” in hopes the transplant would help return Ted to maximum wellness.

On June 23, 2015, Lynn bid farewell to Maxwell as “he” made a lifesaving journey from her to Ted. Three days later, Lynn came home from the hospital. Ted and his new kidney, Maxwell, were released within a week.

Friendly Family Feud
Both Lynn and Ted have recovered fully from their surgeries. Recently, Lynn and her family appeared on an episode of the TV game show Family Feud which aired on October 22, 2021.

When show host Steve Harvey greeted her, Lynn was delighted for the opportunity to talk on national TV about her personal experience as a living donor and promote awareness of the need for organ donation.

Maxwell is Well
Since the transplant, Ted reports that he and Maxwell are both indeed well. Ted has retired from the Police Department and now works with the local school system. Lynn regularly runs 20 miles a week and has even completed her first marathon.

“Ted’s family is always saying ‘thank you’ at family gatherings, and I just say there’s no need to thank me, I did it because of love and hope,” Lynn says. “It was the best (and easiest) decision I’ve ever made. I would do it 1,000 times if I could.”

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